SAN FRANCISCO (KRON) – A group of residents who sued to reopen San Francisco’s Great Highway 24/7 are appealing a judge’s decision that the thoroughfare can remain closed over the weekends.
As KRON4 reported, Judge Richard Ulmer ruled in favor of the city and against the Open the Great Highway Alliance last month.
The city originally closed the highway for socially distanced exercise at the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic. Advocates for reopening the freeway say the street closure negatively affects the elderly and disabled, and contributes to unsafe traffic conditions in the Sunset neighborhood.
Mayor London Breed and supervisors Gordon Mar, who represents the Sunset, and Connie Chan, who represents the Richmond neighborhood, announced a compromise August 5 whereby the Great Highway would be open to cars on the weekdays, but closed noon Friday till 6 a.m. Monday, which is the situation that prevails today.
Respectfully, the judge misapplied the law and based his decision on unsupported and provably false data,” Steven Hill, one of the plaintiffs suing to reopen the highway, said in a press release. “The judge accepted the city’s flawed evidence without even considering the plaintiffs’ objections to the admission of that evidence as hearsay and irrelevant to the legal issues at hand.”
Jen Kwart, a spokesperson for San Francisco City Attorney David Chiu, stated on behalf of the city that “we are pleased the trial court agreed that the city had the authority and a compelling reason to close these roads, and we will continue to defend the city’s ability to provide residents safe spaces to recreate on appeal.”